Friday, September 19, 2014

STEAM is Here and It's Wonderful!

The school year has started off with such excitement as we bring the STEAM model aboard at Roswell North.  I'm lucky to have a 5th grade class of 20 students every day, learning about physics and making all kinds of neat things.  We have launched rockets and collected data about distance, mean, and range, and we've speculated about how to change things like aerodynamics and trajectory to make our rockets go further.

Our latest project has been kite building, and we're investigating how best to get lift to push our kites into the sky.  What is the best design when there is little wind?  When there is a lot of wind?  How can we construct a kite that will not only go high, but survive if it is really windy, or if we crash?  What are the weaknesses of our materials?  What is our point of failure, and how can we improve what we have built?  What does success really mean as we are learning about the qualities of a good kite?

The students have been doing a great job of building and documenting their work.  We've learned about the Engineering Design Process and why it is important for us to approach our projects with this model.  I love hearing the students using their physics vocabulary as they work on their designs and try them out.  This has been such a great process for us all!

1 comment:

  1. Wow - is your school doing some sort of pilot program? Our school has been talking about getting things going with STEAM but it's not organized like yours. I look forward to hearing/seeing more.